T-shirts are excellent promotional materials that can get your business more exposure than many other marketing methods. There are, however, a few things to bear in mind when printing t-shirts, starting with their aesthetic appeal – will anyone actually want to wear one?
1 The aesthetic appeal of your t-shirt designs
The aesthetic appeal of your t-shirt designs is among the most important of the many things you need to take into account when designing and producing promotional t-shirts, after all; if they’re not aesthetically appealing why would anyone want to wear one?
Don’t make the mistake of having your designs printed and then hope for the best; create your designs and ask your employees, co-workers, friends and customers what they think.
Social media is an excellent way to get feedback on the designs you’re considering printing as it’s free and could save you a lot of money if the designs you’ve come up with aren’t proving appealing.
2 The need for quality materials and printing services
The t-shirts on which you’ll print your designs are nearly as important as the designs themselves and that also goes for the t-shirt printing services you use.
Whilst you might have created an excellent design, if the t-shirts you print on are substandard for any of many reasons – they stretch out of place, they don’t hang well, they look haggard after a couple of washes, etc. – they’re not going to do your brand any favours and it’s unlikely they’ll be worn often and will therefore fail to create exposure for your business.
This is also the case with the printing services you use, as a great design could fail to attract the attention that it should if it isn’t printed to high standards.
3 Creativity, originality and message
T-shirt printing is a creative business and the best designs are those that stand out for their creative, original qualities – that’s what makes t-shirt designs popular and makes people want to wear them.
Most businesses simply don’t possess the creative, original talent required to produce t-shirt designs that stand out for the right reasons, i.e. for being creative, original and aesthetically appealing, so you might find it advantageous to hire a designer.
It’s ok to take cues from other designs because some of the best t-shirt designs are simple spins on popular designs, though they must have the feel of originality if your business is to put its best foot forward with its promotional t-shirts and ripping off someone else’s design simply isn’t the way to do so.
The message the design conveys is also important, so give some thought to what it says about your business organisation, and just as importantly, what it says about the person wearing it.
4 How you’ll distribute them
How do you plan on distributing the t-shirts you’ve printed? Are you planning on selling them, giving them to your customer base or are you planning on giving them out as ‘swag’ at a trade show or events?
Your distribution tactics matter because you need to recover the costs of having them designed and printed, and if you are going to produce quality t-shirts there’s going to be expenditure involved.
There are a few ways in which you can recover the costs of designing and printing t-shirts, including selling them – they have to be desirable if anyone is to buy one – and by increasing sales – the aim of all promotional products is to increase sales through creating a buzz and greater awareness.
It’s the latter that you’ll most likely want to opt for – selling t-shirts can be tough going for business organisations not directly associated with the fashion industry – and there are a few ways in which you can aim to increase sales with your promotional t-shirts.
You can distribute them for free at trade shows to increase awareness of your brand, you can give them out to entice customers to buy your products – Buy this and receive a free t-shirt! – and you can distribute them to your loyal customer base to keep your business at the forefront of their minds.
T-shirts are excellent promotional materials – how you design, print and distribute them decides how successful your promotional efforts will be.
Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Amber Dougharty writes for a Perth-based business specialising in the manufacture and delivery of quality promotional products. Mad Dog Promotions is one of the leading providers of lanyards, magnets, and other items in Australia.